Goat’s head sent to Cubs
A goat’s head was left outside baseball team the Chicago Cubs’ home park, Wrigley Field, in a box addressed to team chairman Tom Ricketts. Ricketts is currently in negotiations with city officials and neighborhood businesspeople about the US$300 million renovation of Wrigley Field. Cubs spokesman Julian Green said on Wednesday that staff at Wrigley Field discovered the package and immediately called police. Chicago police spokesman Officer Veejay Zala said Chicago police responded to a call indicating an “intimidating package” had been received. Zala would not elaborate, adding that police are investigating. Chicago legend says a restaurant owner allegedly cursed the Cubs when they would not let his pet goat into Wrigley Field.
Hopkins to fight Murat
Bernard Hopkins, the oldest boxer to win a major world title, said on Wednesday that he will defend his IBF light heavyweight crown this summer against German Karo Murat. Hopkins broke his own world record by nearly two years last month by winning a unanimous decision over Tavoris Cloud at the age of 48 to take the title. Murat, a 29-year-old of Armenian heritage, is 25-1-1 with 15 knockouts. He suffered his only loss in 2010 to undefeated Welshman Nathan Cleverly and won his most recent bout in June last year by stopping Czech Sandro Siproshvili. Hopkins, 53-6 with two drawn and 32 knockouts, had to face Murat or forfeit the title under terms of a deal that allowed him to step in front of Murat to challenge Cloud. Hopkins told ESPN that if he gets past Murat, he would be interested in a unification fight in Britain against either WBO champion Cleverly, 25-0 with 12 knockouts, or Carl Froch (30-2 with 22 knockouts), provided the Englishman beats Mikkel Kessler in a unification showdown next month for the IBF and WBC super middleweight crowns. Also mentioned was a possible fight with former super middleweight champion Lucian Bute in Canada if Bute defeats Jean Pascal in a May 25 bout.
Bring back baseball: Torre
Joe Torre says his experience as US manager in the World Baseball Classic (WBC) has convinced him that the sport belongs in the Olympics. Baseball has been out of the Olympics since 2008. Baseball and softball are making a consolidated effort to return to the Games in 2020. Torre said that the success of the WBC reflects the popularity of baseball at the international level. He said he was impressed with how invested the players were in the games, even though they had to leave spring training to participate. The US lost in the semi-finals of the 16-nation tournament. The Dominican Republic defeated Puerto Rico in the championship game. Torre is a Major League Baseball executive vice president.
Malaysia bids for Asian Cup
Malaysia has joined the long list of countries vying to host soccer’s 2019 Asian Cup. Football Association of Malaysia (FAM) leaders made the decision at an executive committee meeting in Kuala Lumpur on Wednesday. Bahrain, China, Iran, Kuwait, Lebanon, Myanmar, Oman, Saudi Arabia, Thailand and the United Arab Emirates have all expressed interest in hosting the region’s premier international tournament, won for a record fourth time by Japan in 2011. “We have the infrastructure and the blessings of the Sports Ministry to host the tournament,” FAM general secretary Azzuddin Ahmad told reporters late on Wednesday. The winning bid will be decided next year.